The Conceptual Framework Development for Studying the Adaptation of the Gulf States’ Authoritarian Regime After Arab Spring

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Arthit Thongin


This paper focuses on developing a conceptual framework for studying the adaptation of the Gulf States after the Arab Spring in a comparative sense. Results of the study reflect the conceptual framework for understanding the Gulf States’ Authoritarian Regimes and include three elements. First, the developmental framework catches up with the authoritarian learning mechanism. It derives from the Gulf States’ Authoritarian Regimes having their own mechanism for learning from experiences, lessons, and strategies of various authoritarian regimes, both inside and outside of the Middle East. Furthermore, the Gulf States’ Authoritarian Regimes use those lessons learned to assess options for responding to the challenges they face. This process leads to the design of reform strategies and adjustments of their governance structure and which could be summarized as the Upgrading Authoritarianism concept. This concept consists of 5 dimensional fabrics: (1) appropriating and containing civil societies; (2) managing political contestation; (3) capturing the benefits of selective economic reforms; (4) controlling new communications technologies; and (5) diversifying international linkages. Finally, the functional process of developing a conceptual framework is set up as a subset of the examination of authoritarian resilience and authoritarian consolidation.

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Thongin, A. (2021). The Conceptual Framework Development for Studying the Adaptation of the Gulf States’ Authoritarian Regime After Arab Spring. Political Science and Public Administration Journal, 12(Suppl. 2), 39–74. Retrieved from
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